One of the important elements to a catering company is knowing how to hire a catering staff. This can be a daunting task if you are not sure what your hiring needs are. Some caterers have a basic full time staff or hire others on an as needed basis depending on the workload and schedule. Food service and catering companies have high turnaround rates, making it difficult to retain good catering staff.
- Finding potential employees. This can be done by placing a help wanted ad in the newspaper, inquiring at a local college or using word of mouth. Hiring friends or family may present issues down the road, so this practice should be avoided if possible. It could create tension with other catering staff, and disrupt a team environment.
- Selecting candidates for an interview. Look for potential candidates who have previous catering or food service experience. Also look at their employment history to see if they change jobs frequently or have large gaps in employment. It’s hard enough to train someone how you want things done, just to have them leave a week later. This only leaves you with starting the whole process over again.
- Setting up interviews. Once you have your list of potential candidates, take one day and set up interviews. This ensures that you have set some quality time aside to give this task your full attention. Two days may be required due to candidate’s schedules, but if they really want the job, they will try to accommodate the date you set. If a candidate keeps rescheduling, this may be a red flag that they might not be able to accommodate the work schedule.
Conducting the interviews. This is critical to the hiring process and attention to detail is needed. Read over their resume before meeting with them, and take special note of appearance, personality and their ability to relate to others. Hiring people who can relate to your customers is critical. If they can’t speak proper English or easily be understood, you will get as frustrated as your customers in dealing with them.
- Post interview process. Never hire anyone on the spot. Always give yourself the opportunity to review all of your candidates before making any decisions. That last one you interview may be the perfect fit for the catering job. Always contact references and previous employers before making any job offers to make sure you just weren’t give a lot of lip service. Many candidates will tell you what you want to hear, rather than being honest about their own situation.
It’s a tough job to hire catering staff, and picking the right candidate can be challenging. It’s always a good idea to set aside some quality time for the interviewing process. It will help to avoid distractions and let you fully concentrate on finding the catering staff that is that best meets the needs of your company.
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